In all media precincts, the Yankees are taking a beating.
If the Bombers were a prizefighter, they would most resemble Mike Tyson rolling around on the canvas looking for his mouthpiece after being hammered by Buster Douglas.
Unlike Tyson, the Yankees have a savior to pick them up off the canvas: The organization has Derek Jeter to lead it out of this mess with Alex Rodriguez.
The captain's presence and persona are uplifting. They can cleanse any muck surrounding the organization. In order for fans to keep the faith, they need a reason to believe, a face they can trust. Jeter, the transcendent one, is that man.
"Invariably consumers turn to sports for relief and distraction from life's problems and setbacks," said a network executive with ties to baseball. "Alex's woes are not exactly uplifting. The Yankees should embrace Derek Jeter's image, wrap their corporate arms around it. He is going to be huge for them on so many levels going forward this season."
There are fresh allegations that Rodriguez obtained performance-enhancing drugs between 2009 and 2012 through an alleged link to Miami-based Anthony (The Biochemist) Bosch. This situation, along with an MLB investigation and the question of whether Rodriguez can return to third base after a second hip surgery, makes his future in pinstripes highly uncertain. A-Rod and Bosch have denied the allegations.
Beyond Rodriguez's story, there are flashbacks to the way the Bombers flickered out in the 2012 postseason, along with the unusual sight of empty seats at Yankee Stadium for playoff games. Regular-season attendance was down last season, and ratings for games on the Yankees Entertainment & Sports Network hit a nine-year low.
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